Taut and loose at the same time

Carrying a spoonful of water.

"Coordinating your practice by having a sense of balance:  holding one's mind taut and loose at the same time.  It is as if you are dressed up in a costume (environmental awareness), holding a spoonful of water (awareness of breath).'


This instruction, from a handout at a meditation retreat, becomes the classroom practice of Carrying a Teaspoon of Water through Empty Space.  How to feel the kinesthetic sensation of taut, then too taut, and then loose and too loose?  How to coordinate and balance these sensations:  attention to  the water in the spoon and, at the same time, walking with the spoon of water across the room and placing it in a bowl on the floor?  There are six bowls, three on each side of the room and three silver spoons.  Each person goes at least twice.  The second time is more playful and daring.  Spilling happens.  Someone has a cloth to wipe up the drops of water.  We help one another experiment.